August 30, 2017

Collaboration: Finding the Right Support Is Critical When Someone Needs Help

To the Editor:

Police Chief Nick Sutter rightly highlighted the importance of “collaboration with medical and psychological health experts and facilities as well as preventative education” as being critical if we are going to effectively support, treat, and combat what is not only a local problem, but a national one: the opioid epidemic [“Physicians from Lowest-Ranked Schools Prescribe More Opioids, PU Study Says,” Town Topics, Wednesday, August 23].

At Trinity Counseling Service [TCS] there are days we receive more than 15 or 20 referrals for counseling and support, many of which are for referrals appropriate for TCS, but some of which might be for services that would be more appropriately provided by partner agencies or colleagues in the community. For example, given that we don’t specialize in drug or alcohol treatment at TCS, when we receive a call from someone struggling with a drug or alcohol-related issue, we may refer the caller to Corner House, a partner organization that does, in fact, specialize in drug and alcohol treatment and addiction issues. Princeton House Behavioral Health also has addiction specialists on staff and there are private practitioners in town as well to whom we refer clients. Knowing who/where to call, and then finding the right therapist or mental health support can be a daunting task, but it’s an essential part of the healing process. If we aren’t the right fit for a client seeking help, we do our best every day to help people navigate the process and find an agency or therapist who is the right fit to start their healing process — and we’re constantly collaborating with our medical, psychological, faith-based, and increasingly, law enforcement partners to offer the best care to our community. Collaboration is key.

Whitney B. Ross EdM, PhD

Executive Director, Trinity Counseling Service